An electronic cigarette or e-cigarette is a handheld electronic device that tries to replicate the feeling or effects of smoking traditional cigarettes. It works by heating a liquid to generate an aerosol, commonly called a “vapor”, that the user inhales. Using e-cigarettes is referred to as vaping.
The liquid in the e-cigarette, called e-liquid, is usually made of nicotine, propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, and flavorings. Though not all e-liquids contain nicotine. The long term health risks of e-cigarettes are not entirely certain yet, but they are likely much safer than tobacco cigarettes and they have shown to be the most effective method to stop smoking.
When used by non-smokers, e-cigarettes can still lead to nicotine addiction, although the main problems with smoking historically have not been the addiction to nicotine, but rather the presence of many damaging chemicals introduced due to the burning of tobacco. So far, no serious adverse effects have been reported for e-cigarettes in trials.
The majority of toxic chemicals found in tobacco smoke are absent in e-cigarette aerosol. Those present are mostly below 1% corresponding levels in tobacco smoke. Some contain diacetyl, a chemical linked to popcorn lung but largely debunked as no reports of popcorn lung have ever been attributed to e-cigarettes, or even to traditional cigarettes which contain much higher quantities of diacetyl. The aerosol can contain toxicants and traces of heavy metals at levels permissible in inhalation medicines, and potentially harmful chemicals not found in tobacco smoke at concentrations permissible by workplace safety standards.
The invention of the modern e-cigarette was in 2003 by Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik (read below for previous patents), and as of 2015 most e-cigarettes are still made in China. Since they were first sold in 2004 their global use has risen exponentially. In the United States and the United Kingdom their use is widespread. Reasons for using e-cigarettes involve trying to quit smoking, reduce risk, or simply to save money, though many use them recreationally as well.
In the UK use among never-smokers was found to be negligible. Because of overlap with tobacco laws and medical drug policies, e-cigarette legislation is debated in many countries. A European directive of 2016 set standards for liquids, vaporizers, ingredients and child-proof liquid containers. As of August 8th 2016, the US FDA extended its regulatory power to include e-cigarettes. There are around 500 brands of e-cigarette, with global sales in excess of US$7 billion.
Pre-Hon Lik History
Joseph Robinson of New York filed a patent for the first “Electric Vaporizer” in May 3, 1927 with the patent being granted and published on Sept. 16, 1930.
My invention relates to vaporizing devices for holding medicinal compounds which are electrically or otherwise heated to produce vapors for inhalation, and the general object is to provide a’device of this character for individual use which may .be freely handled without any possibility of being burned, and which is sanitary and very` effective and so simple’that anyone can use it. Instruments of this character heretofore provided are quite intricate and invariably become so hot that they cannot be comfortably handled. In them the important element of sanitation is neglected, and they are difficult to clean. To change from one compound to another without leaving particles of the previous compound remaining in these prior instruments is low and difficult. The vapors cannot be, by the act of inhalation, quickly lifted out of them, and the result is that the vapors are not delivered to the aiiicted parts hot enough or in sufficient volume to be fully effective. In my invention these essential requirements are each fully provided for in a manner that produces an extremely simple vaporizer which extended use has demonstrated to be of great effectiveness -in the treatment of the addictions for which its use is intended.
The present invention relates to a smokeless non-tobacco cigarette and has for an object to provide a safe and harmless means for and method of smoking by replacing burning tobacco and paper with heated, moist, flavored air; or by inhaling warm medication into the lungs in case of a respiratory ailment under direction of a physician. Another object of the invention is to provide an article of manufacture resembling a cigarette by which air may be drawn through a porous substance of a cartridge which has been moistened with a chemically harmless flavoring preparation, combining moisture and taste following which the moist and flavored air passes through a section of the device heated by a suitable heating element so that warm, moist and flavored air is drawn into the mouth and if desired into the lungs of the user.